Backyard photography

Happy Mother’s Day!

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I spent yesterday afternoon with my parents in their backyard.  We had a fun time planting and transplanting, trying to make sure there’s enough nectar to satisfy Mum-mum’s visiting hummers.  When I saw the Red-Bellied Woodpeckers eating oranges in Dick’s backyard, though, I couldn’t resist going to get my camera… These silly birds will land carefully on the branch above the orange, sorta hop-skip-flap their way down to actually stand on the orange, then peck it open with their beaks in order to get at the juice within.  Sorry, Dick, I hope you don’t mind sharing… Mum-mum and Dyeyo call their resident friendly woodpecker “Shorty.”  He comes to their feeders regularly, especially now that he’s raising a brood of babies.  Sometimes he brings Mrs. Shorty in, too.  Yesterday both Mr. and Mrs. Shorty spent a good part of the afternoon taking care of their new family.  They’d fly down to the feeder, grab a seed, then disappear up into the oak tree.  Tiny baby calls would ensue.  Then the process repeated, over and over.  We tried to find the nest, but I couldn’t find the cavity hole.  We did find a recent fledgling, though.  We spotted a fledgling Mockingbird, too, […]

Beyond the Backyard

Anniversary at Bok Tower Gardens

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It’s hard to believe that Rich and I have been married for seven years.  We were married at Bok Tower Gardens, so we decided to go back there today in honor of our anniversary.  Rich didn’t mind that I brought The Beast along.  We saw lots of great baby birds. Since it’s our anniversary, I’ll be nice and post a turtle picture for Rich.  (He does remind me regularly that this site was inspired by cats and turtles…long before the birding craze began!)  So here are three turtles who were sunning themselves at the Window by the Pond. There were Blue Jays all over.  These common birds do not hang out in my backyard, so it’s always fun to see them.  I spotted a juvenile bird feeding with its mother at the bird feeder (squirrel feeder!) by the tower overlook.  This adult was near the Visitor’s Center.  After years of saying I wanted a longer lens, it’s nice to complain that I clipped his tail because I needed to take off my teleconverter… :) Carolina Wrens could be heard singing throughout the gardens.  When I finally spotted one out in the open, he was in shade.  I didn’t have my […]

Beyond the Backyard

Quiet morning at the Circle B Bar Reserve

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The sky was clear and the winds were northeast and there were not many migrants at the Circle B Bar Reserve this morning. It was a bit cooler, though, and a walk through the marsh at dawn is always pleasant. Thankfully I didn’t see any alligators, either! I started out on Heron Hideout and checked for the little family of Black-Bellied Whistling Ducks. Actually there are several families, on both sides of the path. The ducklings from the family on the left have been losing their yellow-and-black cute baby feathers and molting into their juvenile plumage. Today I saw just one juvenile, with a parent, and as I watched they took to the air and flew away. Birds grow up so quickly! In the picture below, the adult has the bright orange beak, and the juvenile has the black beak. There were three Limpkins on Heron Hideout past Marsh Rabbit Run (still closed :(). The Limpkins at Circle B are usually fairly skittish, but I stood there quietly for a while and let them get used to me. Then they let me get closer and photograph them. One of the Limpkins must have thought he was a Sand Hill Crane, […]